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Palo Alto managers talk of joining Teamsters

Original post made on Sep 30, 2009

Seeking a greater voice in negotiations with the city, Palo Alto's 242 management employees are considering joining the International Brotherhood of Teamsters or forming an in-house association that would enable them to bargain collectively with the city.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 30, 2009, 9:40 PM

Comments (49)

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Posted by Retired Staffer
a resident of another community
on Sep 30, 2009 at 10:25 pm

This movement will strengthen the efforts of SEIU because upper management was counting on middle management to cross the SEIU lines in the event of a strike. The entire affair shows how stupidly the aging, hide-bound council members have approached labor-management relations. Their attitudes have placed the entire city at risk. Time for the City to fire the incompetent advisors and time for the voters to fire the lifer council members.


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Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Sep 30, 2009 at 10:51 pm

Couldn't have said it better Retired Staffer.


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Posted by Brian Wilson
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 30, 2009 at 11:02 pm

Glad to hear that management employees have finally decided to unionize and negotiate their own salary and benefits package instead of relying on a bogus union like seiu or the city manager to dictate what their benefit package should be. Essentially this announces a vote of "no confidence" in the city managers office as it continues to reveal his inability to manage even his own managers and exposes the spiraling low morale problem within city employee groups. The continued exodus of experienced and knowledgeable city employees either through retirement or resignation continues at a great loss to palo alto residents.


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Posted by MakeAnExample
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Sep 30, 2009 at 11:12 pm

[My comment refer to some, not all the people who work for the city. That said, it refers to a majority.]

The people in city hall have grown too comfortable. Every time I go there, I see people who are relaxed and unhurried. Somehow, staffers have gotten the impression that city hall exists for their benefit, not for the benefit of the residents. These people are too handsomely paid for the work they do and their benefits are too generous as well.

It doesn't matter that Palo Alto has money in reserves. That money belongs to the people who paid it in, not to the employees of city hall.

Palo Alto should let the workers strike and outsource their jobs. As a Palo Alto resident, I would have no qualms about volunteering some of my time to do work in city hall. And in keeping with the times, Palo Alto should adopt a flat organization and not have much middle management.

I'd have no qualms whatsoever in supporting the city council in this. As far as I'm concerned, the workers could strike forever and, in this economy, we could get their work done by others for less, much less.


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Posted by ItsADemocracy
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 1, 2009 at 7:15 am

The unions should negotiate directly with the residents. Contracts should be put up for a vote. We should not allow unions to influence our politicians to get sweet deals just because they donated money to them.


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Posted by Sam Gompers
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 7:48 am

Its about time for the City of Palo Alto middle managers to affiliate with a union.


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Posted by LR
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 7:54 am

This is a great idea because it allows the city to differentiate contracts. The management employees are the ones who are truly overpaid and need to take bigger cuts than SEIU members.


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Posted by LWR
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Oct 1, 2009 at 9:05 am

"Many SEIU workers earn significantly less than the $72,662 listed as the average salary, she said."

Thank you Barbara for your words. They are factual and coming from a top management official, I hope that the citizens finally get it that we (SEIU employees) have not been making all this stuff up. We are hurting. The proposed cuts by management will devestate families and Palo Alto communities. We cannot afford the cuts proposed by management. The SEIU proposed cuts will help the City and at the same time keep our familes from being thrown out in the streets. (No exaggeration. Can't pay rent. Can't pay mortgage. Where do we live? How do our children keep going to school without the added stress of Mom and Dad not being able to pay basic bills???)

The City is using 'fear and bad economic times' tactics during these blue-collar worker negotiations. Shame on them. It is very disrespectful and unconscionable.

Management wanting to unionize is a reflection of the stressful working environment we are all under. This City needs and deserves better leadership.


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Posted by duh
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 9:37 am

"Many SEIU workers earn significantly less than the $72,662 listed as the average salary, she said."

...and many SEIU workers earn more than $72,662.
...and many workers earn more than the average total compensation of $114k.
That's why it's called an *average*.
You don't get paid based on need.


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Posted by Concerned Retiree
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 1, 2009 at 10:15 am

It seems that most of those "former staffers" and "residents of another community" are the ones who are going thumbs up for the Teamsters. I agree with MakeAnExample. Let those who pay these wages make the determination of what they are willing to pay, to whom and for what. Jim Keene is doing a marvelous job!


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Posted by Concerned Resident
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Oct 1, 2009 at 10:21 am

Yep, Jim Kneene is doing a very good job.

The contract with SEIU and city managers should be put to the residents for a vote. After all, if we are paying for it, we should have a say on how much we pay.


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Posted by Retired Staffer
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 10:24 am

Make an Example--
The "relaxed and unhurried" workers you see are in the Revenue Collections eclosure. It's their job to be "relaxed and unhurried." They have to soothe, calm, stroke and otherwise deal with irate citizens who can't read the parking regulations or get their utility payments in on time. The real work in Revenue Collections is done behind closed--and locked--doors where a very large amount of paper work is successfully processed in a timely and accurate manner. Know what you're talking about before you shoot your mouth off.


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 10:39 am

I can't believe how delusional some folks on this board are. Concerned Retiree and ItsADemocracy want to decide directly what they feel a fair wage for all city employees should be.

O.K. Yeah, because that's how government works right. We decide how much to pay the President of the US, members of congress, judges, district attorneys, members of the armed forces, police officers, street sweepers, library workers, and all the other public servants. They all work for us since we pay their salaries and benefits via tax dollars of one sort or another.

First, you must have a lot of free time on your hands if you are proposing to come up with a salary structure for all of these folks. Second, how are you going to get everyone to agree on an amount. Don't say put it on a ballot since you'll have to come to some preliminary agreement on at least a salary range.

I mean the sillyness that is spouted on this board is amazing. Salaries for employees either in the private sector or the public secotr are all based upon what other similar employers are paying. You can not just decide you don;t want to pay these City employees a lower salary if the next City over is not doing the same thing.

I for one think that the last thing this City needs is another union. Does anyone know how much time and effort is wasted in contract negotiations. Any savings you get by imposing benefit cuts on management employees just because you can will be more than eaten up by more forced union negotiations with this group just becuase they feel taken advantage of. Remember that tha City does not even feel they have HR staff capable of negotiating contracts themselves. They have a high dollar contract with a company called IEDAto do their negotiations for them. This is crazy.


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Posted by reader
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 10:53 am

Let's see now, there are 1055 Palo Alto employees, over 600 of whom are in the SEIU union, and there are 242 middle managers thinking about forming a union. Let me subtract 242 from 1055 and I get 813. That's one middle manager for every 3.3 employees. No wonder they are worried...


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Posted by Willy
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 1, 2009 at 11:12 am

Look for the union label and you will find corruption and the fleecing of the Palo Alto Taxpayer.

Solution -- Declare the Palo Alto Incorporation insolvent and close the Palo Alto Incorporation, fire everyone. Re-Incorporate as the "New Palo Alto" everyone must reapply for a non-union job.


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Posted by Disappointed
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 1, 2009 at 11:19 am

Why does the union think its members should be immune from impacts of the economic downturn that the rest of us are living with? I've asked this questkon repeatedly and NONE of the union proponents has answered.

While I appreciate the short-term pay reductions that have been offered, it's a trivial gesture in the face of the problems we are facing. The rest of us are living with much worse--unemployment, salary cuts of 10-40%, large reductions in benefits. If the community who pays your salaries has to live with this, why should you be immune? A satisfactory compromise has not been offered yet.

Yes. I have looked at the budget. I don't see that the union arguments hold up. The money the union claims to be there simply is not.






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Posted by Retired Staffer
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 12:00 pm

As soon as the news broke about management seeking union representation, the City Manager announced a negotiating session for October 6. Obviously, the City wants to settle the SEIU dispute before the managers' organizing effort builds up any more steam. Jim Keene does the job that the City Council wants done. Russ Carlson (Who he?) does the job that Jim Keene wants done. IMHO, the SEIU contract will be settled on October 7.


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Posted by Anon
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 12:02 pm

Disappointed, while not a union member I am a city employee. Frankly I just don't understand your argument. We have been lucky so far to not get laid off, but we all know it's coming. Why all of you think that we are immune is beside me. We can and do lose our jobs the same way you do. There are many companies in this world that have not laid people off.

You chose badly when you took your job and you got laid off, that is not my fault. I work my rear end off, 9 hours a day, plus extra every single week. I don't get over time for any of that. And, I have to listen to every sniviling PA resident call for my head even though they have no idea who I am or what I do. You're just bitter because your million dollar a year job fell through and you don't know how you're going to pay your over priced mortgage. Your bitter because you continually vote to keep tax generating businesses out of PA and then, oddly, there is no money. I don't see why I need to pay for your foolishness. You got yourself into your mess, you get out of it on your own - don't break others just to make yourself feel better. You constantly complain that you own us, yet you take no responsibility for the mess.

You shouldn't be disappoitned, you should be disgusted.


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 12:16 pm

More silly comments. Willy said why not just declare the City of Palo Alto insolvent and start over. The reason would be because the City is no where near being insolvent.

That's like saying "I don't like all these contracts I've voluntarily entered into with my automobile finance company, my cable company, my cell phone vendor and my credt card company. Even though I have plenty of money now, I will just file bankruptcy now so I don;t have to make tough decisions in the future. I'll just start from scratch."

Let's face it, we are all at fault for not electing a City Council that is willing to invest some effort in making the correct decisions. That is where our effort should be. We all should be calling for town hall sytle meetings so we can grill each council candidate to ensure they will make the right decisions going forward.

But that won't happen. Instead everyone here will continue to simply make silly comments and never accomplish any tangible improvements to our once great city.

I dare you all to prove me wrong.


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Posted by fireman
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 12:51 pm

Teamsters, Don't they drive trucks? I thought they were one of the most corrupt unions in the history of the USA?

Perfect for CPA


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Posted by Concerned in Palo Alto
a resident of Stanford
on Oct 1, 2009 at 1:02 pm


Interesting that city workers are posting comments during work time - not enough to do? Using city resources to check the paper and read and write comments? Someone should look into it!

Yes - the teamsters are corrupt - but most Unions are - and that goes for government groups as well - always something going on in the back room.

And MakeAnExample is right on! RetiredStaffer must have had one of those "Relaxed and Unhurried" jobs when working a Union job. None of my jobs ever required me to act and appear "relaxed and unhurried". Gee, that sounds tough! I wonder how many city job descriptions have that phrase as one of the requirements of the job.


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Posted by Retired Staffer
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 1:14 pm

Concerned in Palo Alto---

If you knew the abuse that the Revenue Collections people have to put up with you would withdraw your comments. The "relaxed and unhurried" folks have to be available for counter service, not process things like Lucille Ball and Vivian Vance in their bakery episode. The real work is behind closed doors.


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Posted by fireman
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 1:44 pm

Behind closed doors is where the city works over the people who care.

That is where they make thier plans to screw the citizens and city employees.

Like the tree murders and the Children theatre


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Posted by Seth
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 1, 2009 at 1:51 pm

I have worked in both the private and public sectors. There is no comparison between the two, when one wants to consider the intensity of the work schedule. The private sector works MUCH more intensely. When I finally left the private sector, after thirty years, for the public sector, I thought I had died and gone to Heaven! I felt like I was semi-retired. I am now fully retired, and I can hardly tell the difference.

A very simple test would be to let the middle managers in Palo Alto quit their jobs, and apply for a private sector job. Private sector HR departments would be very wary of hiring them, because they lack the intensity to work 70 hours per week, without whining, even if significant bonuses are dangled before their eyes for successful outcomes.

If Palo Alto was to be reincorporated as a private concern, we would get much better services, for much lower costs. Those workers for this new corporation would also be better compensated, because they would be rewarded for productivity, not just job title.


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Posted by Morris
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 2:15 pm

> Many SEIU workers earn significantly less than the $72,662

And your point is? What about your total family income? It has been common practice of labor unions, and public sector people to claim that they are "victims" .. because they make so little. Reality is that most homes these days are two-family income homes. So .. how much is your total income? Most labor union types become outraged when ask to tell the truth about their total incomes, yet .. they tell the IRS and the Bank when they are looking for a loan.

And what happened to the old American ideal of working up to your potential. If you need more more than you are being paid by the City of Palo Alto .. go find another job! Oh, and let's not forget that pensions are actually deferred income, so that all of that money that you will be getting after you retire should also be on the table. Most labor union types refuse to admit that this money should be viewed as "income". Once you do see it as income, your yearly jumps up by anywhere from 30%-100% (depending on your pension agreement).

At any rate, if your unhappy .. go find a new job that pays you what you think you are worth.


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Posted by Morris
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 2:24 pm

> At any rate, if your unhappy

At any rate, if you're unhappy ..

Ooops .


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Posted by Where's Jimmy?
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 3:07 pm

Whenever there is more than one union competing in an organizing drive I always wonder whether one of the unions is working on behalf of the employer.

Four of the five organizers of the previous attempt to unionize the management and professional staff are no longer able to participate: Leon Kaplan and Kathy Espinoza-Howard have retired, Greg Betts wants to be a permanent, not just interim, department director, and Michael Reynolds is one of the supervisors who left the City after the Utilities Department workers were discovered working in Menlo Park. Only Rose Sebastian remains of that group of five.

Last time, the organizers could not get a majority of the proposed bargaining unit to sign up, and then lost the election to form a union. Now, many of the pro-union people have left employment with the City.

Here are a couple of links to an editorial and an article about the prior attempt to form a union.

Palo Alto Weekly Editorial, August 23, 2003: Web Link

Palo Alto Weekly Article: December 2, 2005: Web Link


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Posted by Where's Jimmy?
a resident of another community
on Oct 1, 2009 at 3:08 pm

Correct Second Link

Palo Alto Weekly Article: December 2, 2005: Web Link


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Posted by Toady
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 1, 2009 at 4:12 pm

"I can't believe how delusional some folks on this board are. Concerned Retiree and ItsADemocracy want to decide directly what they feel a fair wage for all city employees should be."

We should. After all, we are basically shareholders of Palo Alto. Who's against shareholder transparency here?


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Posted by cc
a resident of Southgate
on Oct 1, 2009 at 4:24 pm

Owning property in PA does not make one a shareholder. It makes you a property owner. In Palo Alto. PERIOD.
Talk about delusional...what do you think the City is, a corporation? You pay property taxes. You pay for your water. You pay for your power. You pay for your cable.
If the City was a corporation(haha) you would not pay for these things because you actually have a share in these services. That makes so much sense. What do you pay for property taxes each year? $8,000? Sweet! I think you got your money's worth from various City services over the past year. Anywhere you move, it's the same. Stop believing we are special here in PA. We only think we are.


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Posted by Morris
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 1, 2009 at 5:12 pm

> If the City was a corporation ..

It is a corporation .. a "municipal corporation", which is not "owned" by its residents, as other corporations might be.

The "municipal corporation" owns the assets which comprise our public spaces, public roads and buildings, etc. We, as voters, do have some say in the administration of the "municipal corporation" via our choices for City Council members .. and the right of ballot initiatives that might deal with the size the "municipal corporation" might grow, or some such, but otherwise .. we don't get much say in how the "municipal corporation" is run.

If we pick the wrong council members .. then we get what we deserve.


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Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Oct 1, 2009 at 5:58 pm

Yes the delusions emanating from some of Palo Altan citizenry are amazing...

It's as if they think humanity itself has been spawned by the coupling of Ann Ryan with Adam Smith, then further by in-line breeding of their offspring---John Galt and Ann Coultier.....whom started out at the top of the venture capitalist heap and now consigned to the social class of "Lumpen Cyberocracy". All that is left for them to do is rant and rail against the city workers.


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Posted by Lazlo
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 1, 2009 at 6:52 pm

OY! Time for some of us to turn off the laptops and enjoy life! Try to keep the anger level down and read your posts before sending them off for the rest of us to read. Nonsense ecourages ignorance! Writing posts simply to see your name on the big screen or to be heard does not make your point any more valid than the village idiot.


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Posted by Toady
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 2, 2009 at 7:16 am

Here is the big problem. Government is a monopoly. And because of that, it's inefficient, because there is no competition to provide the same services. Can we get another party to give us water or electricity? No. Can we have another party give us better police, planning or street cleaning?

No. No. No.

In general, market forces help to keep unions in check. If the unions ask too much, and management is too stupid to give in, the company dies. Here, Palo Alto city (along with CA state government) has no check for that, because IT ACTS LIKE A MONOPOLY. All they need to do is keep raising tax rates on residents to feed the pig. Elected officials don't care, because they're outta there after term limits.

Perhaps PA and CA need to go the Vallejo route. And, oh, by the way, we should outlaw unions in government. It's clear that all they do is donate money to politicians to influence them so they can get sweetheart deals that leave residents paying taxes holding the bag.

It's complete BS that people here rail against special interest groups and "evil corporations," when it's clear that the unions, especially the SEIU have embedded themselves in the corrupt political culture that is driving our city and state into the ground.

I'm not giving the unions a pass, and neither should you.


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Posted by Sam Gompers
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 7:50 am

I would just like to say that not all corporations are evil at all times. Regulation of corporations is not necessary because the CEOs and boards of corporations have proven themselves to be worthy of the public trust. The economic experience of the past year alone shold prove that point beyond a reasonable doubt.

Simply allow all corporations to certify by a mere signature from the CEOs that they are complying with all laws and regulations. That should suffice. Government should get out of the way. Regulation of corporations is not needed.

Thank you for allowing me to clarify these crucial points.


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Posted by cc
a resident of Southgate
on Oct 2, 2009 at 8:16 am

I just found out that Union workers drive the trucks that deliver food to Safeway. OH MY! Also, there's a checker I know that makes more than me. And guess what? She's a Union member. It is clear that the price of groceries cannot be sustained with all of this Union bloodsucking. Who knew?
Practically everything you touch, walk on, buy, eat,drive, etc. has been touched by Union hands at least once. Yep, it's totally out of control. Let's REVOLT NOW!
yeah, sure


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Posted by homero
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Oct 2, 2009 at 10:07 am

ahh teamsters, so lazy and surly!!!


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Posted by Wha?
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 10:14 am

Quick note to Seth -

In what world does this make sense?

"much better service and much lower costs"

Walgreens vs. Nordstrum

Low prices no service vs. high prices great service

Can't have what you describe. Something in the middle is to most peoples liking and expectations.

PA citizens are asking for Walmart.


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Posted by Anon
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 12:24 pm

The people of Palo Alto would welcome a Walmart about as much as they would welcome an atomic bomb. Please.

I'm not union, and I don't support the SEIU, and as a manager I don't support the feeble drive for us to unionize. But I take exception to the many many generalizations going on here. City workers are not all lazy. No more so than in the private industries. We are being slammed here for "looking comfortable". What? So now not only are we supposed to be your slaves, but we are supposed to make minimum wage and be harried all the time? I just don't get it.

And, CC have you looked into the actual pipeline for food production? Can you tell me exactly what percent of the cost of food goes to unions? Can you? No? Your words mean nothing, and you should keep them to yourself until you can back up your acusations.

Toady, I can't believe you would actually advocate more complexity in government. People already complain about how long it takes to get anything done, and now you want to add multiple branches to the tree? It makes no sense, none at all. For the record everything government does by contractors is bid out. We are required to take the lowest bid. And every thing we do internally is heavily regulated by the city charter and many other laws. So no, there is no monopoly - that's just your buzzword for the day. You should consider a more logical one.


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Posted by cc
a resident of Southgate
on Oct 2, 2009 at 1:21 pm

Anon-
I was joking. People are so anti-union, they don't even realize that one Union or another has their hand in EVERYTHING here in America. I was trying to remind everyone that Unions are everywhere and you cannot avoid them. Lighten up. Oops, I forgot, you are anti-Union too. ("...I don't support the SEIU...")go figure...


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Posted by cc
a resident of Southgate
on Oct 2, 2009 at 1:23 pm

Or should I have responded to Anon, AKA Jim K.?


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Posted by Anon
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 2:01 pm

My apologies, I think I get sooooo defensive because of all the crap bantered about on this site. I'm totally anti-union, in this case and in most. I don't think they are the evil entities most here seem to think, but I don't think they serve a purpose with white collar office workers either.

So, joke taken, it was actually funny. But I can't lighten up. Remember? I'm a city worker, according to MakeAnExample, we are never supposed to look relaxed. Their good tax dollars are not paying me to look relaxed. I must look crazed and rushed at all times.


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Posted by Anon
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 2:03 pm

Oh, and I am definately not Jim. I don't know him other than polite hello's in the elevator, but you could not pay me enough to do what he does for a living. No thank you! I am not nearly that brave.


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Posted by Facts
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 3:00 pm

To "reader" in Barron Park -

Your conclusions about a management to staffing ratio are based on some incorrect data and sloppy research at best, and probably a bias at worst. The actual name of the employee group is management, professional, and confidential. It contains far more than just supervisory managers - it includes engineers, attorneys, planners, IT staff and confidential staff in the HR Department. You wouldn't really want the people working on negotiations and discipline or running the City's computer systems to be part of the SEIU, would you?

About half of the employees in the "management" group are in these other categories. When you take them out of the calculation the actual ratio of supervisory management to SEIU members is about 7:1.

Your misleading argument sounds suspicously like the one that SEIU attempts to make in suggesting "just cut management to fix the budget problem" instead of dealing with benefits like 100% paid medical coverage. Hmmm - not by any chance a City employe/SEIU member, are you.......?


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Posted by Toady
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 2, 2009 at 6:45 pm

Anon, did you even read my post? Clear that you're not understanding my point.


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Posted by Retired Staffer
a resident of another community
on Oct 2, 2009 at 10:06 pm

Facts--

I'm a retired SEIU member. Let's take you post apart:

Most engineering staff are SEIU members.
Most planning staff are SEIU members.
Most IT staff are SEIU members.

Your stats are inaccurate. So are SEIU's stats. Have a nice weekend.


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Posted by Facts
a resident of another community
on Oct 3, 2009 at 8:44 am

To 'retired staffer' -

Well, I guess it's kinda obvious why you're retired - inattention to detail, perhaps? Please reread my original post which you loosely cite. Where did I ever talk about "most... enginnering staff...planning staff...IT staff"? NOWHERE! I said it includes staff from those functions, and it does. My point is that the aggregate of the Mangement, Professional, and Confidential unit includes staff from those functions beyond just supervisory managers - and that is correct despite your attempt to confuse the issue.

My weekend is just fine, Thanks.


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Posted by Anon
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 4, 2009 at 6:27 am

Teamsters!?!? Unbelievable. I don't know what message these "managers" are trying to send, but, the message I received is that Palo Alto city employees are completely out of touch with reality.

The fact is that the city is slowly going broke, and the cause is benefits. The choices are: major layoffs and cutbacks in services; cutting benefits, including future retirement benefits, especially healthcare; or major cutbacks in salaries. There isn't enough money to keep doing what we're doing now in the future, either for SEIU employees or for "managers". Personally, if I were a city employee, I would be looking to give back salary and hang on for dear life to the medical benefits.


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Posted by reality
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 4, 2009 at 8:08 am

The message I get is that these people feel they need to be protected.

The City may be going broke from the level of benifits that employees enjoy but the problem is actually that city income is low. It has been decided along the way by our CC not to support projects that would create income. Houses and the property taxes they generate do not support the programs (and employees) that we demand. The majority of property taxes go to the state and county. We need sales tax. Look around at all those stores that we will not allow into PA. Thay are in communities that surround us. These cities are having less problem paying for the people that they employ. If we intend to continue demanding the levels of service from the people our city pays, we need to realize that we are in financial competition with other municipalities, who, as long as they have the money, will pay those that do the work. I believe PA will soon become a training ground for municipal workers that will no doubt go where the money is. We can complain and hate the realities all we want but that won't change a thing.


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